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Kalinga, aka: Kāliṅga, Kaliṅga; 6 Definition(s)


Kalinga means something in Buddhism, Pali, Hinduism, Sanskrit. If you want to know the exact meaning, history, etymology or English translation of this term then check out the descriptions on this page. Add your comment or reference to a book if you want to contribute to this summary article.

In Hinduism

Nāṭyaśāstra (theatrics and dramaturgy)

Kaliṅga (कलिङ्ग) is the name of a country situated within the Dākṣiṇāpatha (Deccan) region. Countries within this region pertain to the Dākṣinātyā local usage (pravṛtti) according to the Nāṭyaśāstra chapter 14. These pravṛttis provide information regarding costumes, languages, and manners in different countries of the world. It is mentioned this region lies between the Southern Ocean and the Vindhya mountains.

The Kaliṅgas are usually to be represented by a dark or deep blue (śyāma) color when painting the limbs (aṅgaracanā), according to Nāṭyaśāstra chapter 23. The painting is a component of nepathya (costumes and make-up) and is to be done in accordance with the science of āhāryābhinaya (extraneous representation).

Source: Wisdom Library: Nāṭya-śāstraNāṭyaśāstra book cover
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Nāṭyaśāstra (नाट्यशास्त्र, natya-shastra) refers to both the ancient Indian tradition of performing arts, (e.g., theatrics, drama, dance, music), as well as the name of a Sanskrit work dealing with these subjects. It also teaches the rules for composing dramatic plays (nāṭya) and poetic works (kāvya).

Vāstuśāstra (architecture)

Kaliṅga (कलिङ्ग) refers to a variety of prāsāda (upper storey of any building), according to the Śilparatna (32.6), the Mayamata (18.10), the Kamikāgama (57.8) and the Īśānaśiva (32-70).

Source: Wisdom Library: Vāstu-śāstra
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Vāstuśāstra (वास्तुशास्त्र, vastu-shastra) refers to the knowledge of architecture. It is a branch of ancient Indian science dealing with topics such architecture, construction, sculpture and their relation with the cosmic universe.


1a) Kaliṅga (कलिङ्ग).—A Kṣetraja son of Bali; after him came Kaliṅgas (s.v.);1 a Rākṣasa in the Atalam. (Tatvalam, Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa.).2

  • 1) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa III. 74. 28 & 87; Matsya-purāṇa 48. 25; Vāyu-purāṇa 99. 28; Viṣṇu-purāṇa IV. 18. 13-14.
  • 2) Vāyu-purāṇa 50. 17; Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa II. 19. 18.

1b) (Mt.) a hill on the south of the Mānasa.*

  • * Vāyu-purāṇa 36. 22; 42. 28.

1c) A southern kingdom of madhyadeśa unfit for śrāddha; a Janapada of the Dakṣiṇāpatha. Its king was stationed by Jarāsandha on the east gate of Mathurā, and on the same direction during the siege of Gomanta;1 present at Pradyumna's marriage. Advised Rukmin to vanquish Balarāma in dice, and laughed at the latter when he was defeated. His teeth were broken by Rāma.2 Its 32 kings.3 On its south flows the Narmadā where the hill Amarakaṇṭaka is.4 In the kṛtayuga, the first man appeared in this country5 under Guhas.6

  • 1) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa II. 16. 42 & 57; III. 13. 13; 14. 33 & 80; 74. 198 & 213; Matsya-purāṇa 163. 72; Vāyu-purāṇa 77. 13; 78. 23; 99. 324, 386, 402.
  • 2) Bhāgavata-purāṇa X. 50. 11[2]; 52. 11[5]; 61. 27-29; 32[1] & 37; IV. 5. 21; Viṣṇu-purāṇa V. 28. 10, 15, 24.
  • 3) Matsya-purāṇa 272. 16.
  • 4) Matsya-purāṇa 186. 12.
  • 5) Vāyu-purāṇa 58. 110.
  • 6) Viṣṇu-purāṇa III. 7. 36.

1d) A tribe born of Dīrghatamas and Bali's wife; enlisted by Jarāsandha against the Yadus;1 people of the Dakṣiṇāpatha.2

  • 1) Bhāgavata-purāṇa IX. 23. 5; X. [50 (V) 3]; Matsya-purāṇa 114. 36 and 47; Vāyu-purāṇa 45. 125.
  • 2) Vāyu-purāṇa 45. 125; Viṣṇu-purāṇa II. 3. 16.

2) Kāliṅga (कालिङ्ग).—The king of, present at the marriage of Anīruddha and advised Rukmin to invite Rāma for dice. Laughed aloud when Rāma failed, and supported Rukmin playing falsely. His teeth pulled out by Rāma.*

  • * Bhāgavata-purāṇa X. 61. 27-37.
Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana IndexPurāṇa book cover
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The Purāṇas (पुराण, purana) refers to Sanskrit literature preserving ancient India’s vast cultural history, including historical legends, religious ceremonies, various arts and sciences. The eighteen mahāpurāṇas total over 400,000 ślokas (metrical couplets) and date to at least several centuries BCE.

Āyurveda (science of life)

Kaliṅga (कलिङ्ग):—A Sanskrit word referring to the “Kurchi” plant and is used throughout Āyurvedic literature such as the Caraka-saṃhitā. Its official botanical name is Holarrhena antidysenterica  and is commonly referred to in English as the “coral swirl”, “tellincherry bark” or “white angel”

Source: Wisdom Library: Āyurveda and botany
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Āyurveda (आयुर्वेद, ayurveda) is a branch of Indian science dealing with medicine, herbalism, taxology, anatomy, surgery, alchemy and related topics. Traditional practice of Āyurveda in ancient India dates back to at least the first millenium BC. Literature is commonly written in Sanskrit using various poetic metres.

In Buddhism


kāliṅga : (m.) name of a country in East India.

Source: BuddhaSasana: Concise Pali-English DictionaryPali book cover
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Pali is the language of the Tipiṭaka, which is the sacred canon of Theravāda Buddhism and contains much of the Buddha’s speech. Closeley related to Sanskrit, both languages are used interchangeably between religions.

Theravada (major branch of Buddhism)

1. Kalinga, Kalinga - An inhabitant of Natika. While staying in Natika, at the Ginjakavasatha, the Buddha tells Ananda that Kalinga was reborn after death in the Suddhavasa, and that there he would attain to nibbana. D.ii.92; S.v.358f

2. Kalinga - A country: the Kalingarattha. It is one of the seven political divisions mentioned in the time of the mythical king Renu and is given first in the list, its capital being Dantapura and its king Sattabhu. (D.ii.235f; see also Mtu.iii.208; the Mtu. also mentions a king Uggata of Dantapura, iii.364f).

It is not, however, included in the list of sixteen Janapadas appearing in the Anguttara Nikaya (A.i.213, etc.), but is found in the extended list of the Niddesa (CNid.ii.37). A later tradition (Bu.xviii.6) states that after the Buddhas death, a Tooth was taken from among his relics and placed at Kalinga, where it was worshipped. From Kalinga the Tooth was brought to Ceylon, in the time of King Sirimeghavanna, by Hemamala, daughter of Guhasiva, king of Kalinga, and her husband Dantakumara, a prince of the Ujjeni royal family. In Ceylon the Tooth became the Palladium of the Sinhalese kings. (Cv.xxxvii.92; see also Cv.Trs.i.7, n.4; the Dathadhatuvamsa gives details, J.P.T.S.1884, pp.108ff).

The Jatakas contain various references to Kalinga. There was once a great drought in Dantapura, and the king, acting on the advice of his ministers, sent brahmins to the king of Kuru to beg the loan of his state elephant, Anjanavasabha, credited with the power of producing rain. On this occasion, however, the elephant failed and the Kalinga king, hearing of the virtues practised by the king and people of Dantapura, offered them himself, upon which rain fell. See the Kurudhamma Jataka, J.ii.367ff, also DhA.iv.88f. A similar story is related in the Vessantara Jataka, vi.487, where the Kalinga brahmins ask for and obtain Vessantaras white elephant that he may stay the drought in Kalinga.

Another king of Kalinga was a contemporary of Aruna, the Assaka king of Potali. The Kalinga king, in his eagerness for a fight, picked a quarrel with Aruna, but was worsted in battle, and had to surrender his four daughters with their dowries to Aruna (J.iii.3f).

The Kalingabodhi Jataka relates the story of another ruler of Kalinga while, according to the Sarabhanga Jataka, a certain king of Kalinga (J.v.135f) went with two other kings, Atthaka and Bhimaratta, to ask Sarabhanga questions referring to the fate of Dandaki. There they heard the sage preach, and all three kings became ascetics. Another king of Kalinga was Nalikira, who, having ill treated a holy man, was swallowed up in the Sunakha niraya, while his country was laid waste by the gods and turned into a wilderness (Kalingaranna). The Kalinga aranna is referred to in the Upali Sutta (M.i.378);

Source: Pali Kanon: Pali Proper Names
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Theravāda is a major branch of Buddhism having the the Pali canon (tipitaka) as their canonical literature, which includes the vinaya-pitaka (monastic rules), the sutta-pitaka (Buddhist sermons) and the abhidhamma-pitaka (philosophy and psychology).

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